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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 29, 2013

DHEC expands scope of Charleston-area hepatitis B investigation

COLUMBIA, S.C. Patients of a Charleston-area spine care center who have received injections since September 2011 are being encouraged to be tested for disease, the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) announced today.

DHEC's investigation included a review of infection control procedures and injection practices. It was determined that procedures may have been performed that resulted in a potential for exposure to an infection. Since the clinic's injection practices have not changed since they began offering injections in September 2011, DHEC cannot ensure that patients who received injections at any time since then were not exposed to a blood-borne pathogen.

DHEC is now contacting all patients who have received a spinal, joint, or other type of injection, including IV fluids, at the Tri-County Spinal Care Center on Dorchester Road in North Charleston and advising them to be tested for hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and HIV.

Patients are encouraged to contact their healthcare provider to get the recommended tests, or they can visit DHEC's Northwoods Health Clinic on Northbrook Boulevard in North Charleston.

Patients with questions can contact DHEC at (843) 953-0095.

More: http://www.scdhec.gov/administration/news/2013/nr20130520-01.htm

Additional information about hepatitis B: http://www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/B/index.htm

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For media inquiries:
Jim Beasley – (803) 898-7769
Email –beaslejc@dhec.sc.gov